Friday 24 October 2008

American Music: 39 Snapshots

As part of their coursework for our module on American Music, UEA students had to write an essay about a piece of American music entirely of their own choosing. Why might this be interesting to the wider world? Because their choices provide us with a fascinating picture of both the development of American Music over the twentieth century (and, in one instance, the nineteenth), and tell us a great deal about the forms of American music that are of interest to today's undergraduates. All 39 individual songs are available to view below as part of a youtube playlist. Some interesting statistics: Bob Dylan is the most represented artist with four songs. Billie Holiday and Don Mclean are a close joint second, though, with three students each electing to write on "Strange Fruit" and "American Pie." Guitar based music, particularly of the sixties and seventies, dominates, though there's a good smattering of country, soul, hip hop and folk. So why not have a browse? I guarantee it will be an education.

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